Social CEM: Moving Beyond Customer Loyalty to Customer Advocacy And Customer Experience (Part 2)

Leveraging Global Trends to Engage Today’s Consumers
According to Nielsen’s latest Global Trust in Advertising report (Figure 3) which surveyed more than 28,000 Internet respondents in 56 countries found that:
» 92% of consumers say they trust earned media, such as recommendations from
friends and family, above all other forms of advertising.
» 70% of global consumers surveyed online indicate they trust messages from online consumer reviews, an increase of 15% in four years.

While many companies are spending millions of dollars in traditional advertising, data like this suggests that perhaps money might be better spent developing social customer experience initiatives. Figure 3. Consumers trust recommendations from people they know more than TV, newspaper or radio ads.

tvTargeting the Millennial Generation
While global trend research points to the need for the management of customer experience and advocacy, companies need to especially focus on the Millennial Generation. This next generation consumer is a unique and large target segment, consisting of consumers that are 13 to 29 years of age, who have adopted social media into their daily lives more rapidly than any other target market. This group is particularly important as history has shown that early adopter behavior typically points the way to mass market adoption of new technologies. While over 50% of the world’s population is under 30 years old, the purchasing power of the Millennial group is estimated to be $170 billion per year. According to comScore3, in the U.S. there are:
» ~79M Millennials (born between 1981 and 2000)
» ~48M Generation Xers (born between 1965 and 1980)
» ~79M Baby Boomers (born between 1946 and 1964)

In Edelman’s study of Millennials, “The 8095 Exchange: Millennials, Their Actionsbrands
Surrounding Brands, and the Dynamics of Reverberation,” they found a direct link
between the immersive, symbiotic relationship Millennials have with social networking
channels and the likelihood to define their personal brand and reputation by aligning
themselves with brands they favor.

According to the study, 86% of Millennials are willing to share information about their brand preferences online, this means creating customer experience programs is of the utmost importance for companies.
Brands must understand and use the demographic, psychographic and online
interaction preferences of Millennials if they want to learn how to engage this next
wave of the largest mainstream market segment.

For instance, when engaging or surveying Millennials, standard consumer survey approaches may not garner the
response expected. Tech-savvy consumers often are fatigued by wordy, lengthy
demographic surveys and the old style of interrogation. Instead companies need to
consider engaging in a dialogue with not only Millennials, but all consumers.
In fact, consumer surveys should not be generic but rather they should capture
the unique customer experience with the brand. For example, a company who is
very focused on the customer experience would actually post completed survey
questions/feedback in the back room of the retail store or a restaurant. With that
information of what the customer experience should look like, staff members can
use it as their guide to focus their customer interaction behaviors.

An insightful survey should capture the customer’s emotional experiences with the brand, moving
beyond traditional questions that tend to interrogate customers. For example, in a
food service context, a generic question like “Was your drink hot (or cold)?” is an
impersonal way to ask a question. A new way to phrase it would be: “The drink was
prepared perfectly for me.”

We’re not done yet…make sure you check back for part 3!

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